Kelly and I just got back from Colorado where we rode 4 Downhill Parks. We’re new at downhill biking but we thought we knew what to expect after riding 4 different parks. We were WRONG! Bailey Mountain is no joke, this place is full on and we should have known that when they required you to wear a full face helmet. None of the downhill parks out west required one.
How Steep is it?
It can’t be that steep? They drive you to the top in a truck right? If I said this place was steep it would be an understatement. Upon arrival to the mountain you sign a waiver and then you will climb into the most badass shuttle ride vehicle you have ever seen. This military vehicle sits so high off the ground they need ramps to load and unload you and your bike. Once your in and holding onto your bike with one hand and the back railing with the other the truck screams to life climbing up the mountain. You can feel the torque this thing is dishing out as it navigates 180 switchbacks on what feels like 30 degree angles. One guy was there just to ride in the truck to the top and they made him sign a waiver just for this part!
It’s All Down From Here
On your first visit to the mountain you will be offered a guide to help you down. Yes I said a guide. It’s not that you will get lost they just don’t want you biting off more than you can chew and they will take you down their easiest Blue trail.They don’t have any Green, Easy or beginner trails here, if you’ve never ridden downhill this is definitely not the place to start. The mountain bikers that ride here are very nice as well and we had 2 regulars show us down our first lap, one led and one ran sweep.
This is the Easy Trail?
Nope, like I just mentioned no easy trails here but it is Bailey Mountains least difficult. Our guide told us at the top that we would start out around this sweeping berm and the trail would split to a high route on the left and a lower mandatory jump on the right. While not being a huge jump it’s 12”-24” depending how fast you are riding as the landing falls away down the slope. The trails here are flowy as a DH Park should be but they are also super super steep. After a few corners we arrived at some steep tight S berms. It’s a good thing Kelly was riding and reacting vs scouting because she would probably not have ridden it if someone was not running sweep behind her the whole way down. When we got to the bottom we knew this place was the real deal.
Fast Flowy Fun
Once you get a feel for the mountain and the pucker factor wears off a bit this place is a lot of fun. We rode the “Easy” line about 5 or 6 times and I hit the mandatory jump each time starting on my 2nd run. The first time was not intentional though as I was following another rider and forgot about the left turn. It’s super smooth, you just have trust your bike and send it. We rode most of the other lines as well with Kelly having to dismount only once for a section that was really really steep. She could barely walk down it. We never even thought about the Black Lines. After 3 hours of riding here we were whipped. If you get tired don’t push it, that’s when mistakes happen and mistakes on DH generally hurt badly.
Bailey Mountain is the steepest place we’ve ever ridden. We didn’t ride the expert lines out west but the Blues at Bailey were as steep as any Black lines we did ride out west.
- Full Face helmets are required and they rent them if you don’t have one.
- Downhill Bikes are also available for rent. We used our All Mountain 140mm/130mm suspension bikes and they did just fine for us. If you want a bike that makes the course easier to ride or you want to ride bigger lines then reserve one of their rigs.
- They are open Friday afternoons and Saturday and Sunday all day.
- Body Armour is a great idea!